In Canada, Working Adventures Await U.S. Citizens 18-35


3 minute read

If you’re between the ages of 18-35 years old, you are eligible to work and live in Canada through International Experience Canada.

Think you’re too old for a gap year? You may be surprised.

While most “working holiday” visas have an age limit of 30, our friendly neighbors to the north allow U.S. citizens between the ages of 18 and 35 to spend up to 12 months legally working and exploring in Canada. And InterExchange’s Work & Travel Canada program is the perfect opportunity to fund your long term abroad travels with access to a support team that has your back.

We recently caught up with a few of the thirty-somethings currently doing Work & Travel Canada. Read about their experiences below!


Lydia kisses partner on the cheek in front of beautiful scenery

Image courtesy of Lydia G.

Lydia, 33 lives with her partner in Vancouver and loves to regularly fish in the mountains. Previously a resident of Brooklyn, Work & Travel Canada has allowed Lydia to experience living in a refreshingly new environment.

“Take the chance!” she responded when asked what she would tell someone considering this program. “You only live once and there is so much to be learned about yourself in this experience. Canada is a beautiful country with a lot of free, natural entertainment!”


Donna poses by a rock in front of scenic view

Image courtesy of Donna C.

Donna, 34 loved trying poutine when first arriving in Canada. Her favorite adventure so far has been driving the Duffey Lake Loop in the early autumn.

“I am over 30, so I would say that if [applicants] meet the age requirements and are considering it, then go for it! I am likely at a different stage of life than the average 18-year-old–I am finishing grad school and changing careers, so this is perfect timing for me to explore what Canada has to offer before I settle down in my second career.

“I’m glad I’m doing it now because I would regret it later if I didn’t.”

Donna poses by a rock in front of scenic view

Image courtesy of Donna C.

“I’m digging the dramatic mountainscapes of BC. It’s stunningly beautiful up here, and I make a point to have lots of adventures into nature through mostly camping and hiking, where I like to practice plant identification because I’m a geek about that stuff. I began my summer driving up the California Coast and hiking around Mount Shasta, and I ended it at Mount Cheam, Mount Shasta’s mother. I’m also humbled by the histories and cultures of the indigenous bands of the Sto:lo First Nation along the Fraser River—whose land I’m currently residing on.”


Brian, 33, is also a big fan of British Columbia. “BC is a great place to live and there’s lots of work.” When asked if he had anything he’d like to share, he said James, our Director of Outbound programs, was very helpful with the process and quick to answer his many questions. (We’re always here to answer any questions you may have along the way!)


Dwaine, 32 is a second year participant (did we mention you can extend for a second year?) and loves the weather in Vancouver, the quality of life, and the new opportunities the city has to offer. We asked Dwaine what advice he would give to someone starting a working holiday, and he offered some sage gap year advice:

  • Be resourceful!
  • Be comfortable with the uncomfortable!
  • Have a game plan but remember to be adaptable!

Dwaine describes Work & Travel Canada as a great way to extend your time and fund long-term travel. It allows you to be curious and is, overall, a great growing experience.

And now, it’s your turn

U.S. citizens are allowed to participate in International Experience Canada with the nomination from a “Recognized Organization.” InterExchange partners with SWAP Working Holidays in Canada to provide support during your application process and for the duration of your stay.

The 2023 IEC season will be open in January 2023. We are currently pre-approving InterExchange applications. You can learn more about our programs at Work & Travel Canada or Work & Travel Canada Young Professional.

Krista Wohlbold By

Krista is the Recruitment and Coordination Specialist for Outbound Programs at InterExchange.

U.S. Department of State-Designated J-1 Visa Sponsor
Alliance for International Exchange
The International Coalition for Global Education and Exchange
European-American Chamber of Commerce New York
Global Ties U.S.
International Au Pair Association
WYSE Travel Confederation